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SpaceX Spacecraft Carrying Astronauts Successfully Docks At Space Station

by : Emily Brown on : 31 May 2020 15:28
SpaceX Rocketship Carrying Astronauts Successfully Docks At Space StationSpaceX Rocketship Carrying Astronauts Successfully Docks At Space StationSpaceX/NASA

The Dragon capsule carrying NASA astronauts has successfully docked at the International Space Station (ISS).  

The SpaceX spacecraft left Earth from Florida yesterday, May 30, after the launch was postponed on Wednesday due to bad weather.

The historic event marks the first time NASA used a private company to transport one of its crews to orbit, and the mission has succeeded in getting astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley to the ISS.

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NASA SpaceX Astronauts ThumbnailNASA SpaceX Astronauts ThumbnailSpaceX

Elon Musk’s company SpaceX confirmed the astronauts’ arrival on Twitter, writing:

Docking confirmed – Crew Dragon has arrived at the @space_station!

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NASA also celebrated the news, posting:

Dragon has docked! Crewed Dragon, with @AstroBehnken and @Astro_Doug on board, are connected to @Space_Station, with @NASA’s communications satellites, known as #TDRS, still providing communications to both. Satellite antenna Satellite

Next up? Hatch opening.

While they might be eager to get on board the ISS and say hello to their fellow astronauts, Behnken and Hurley will have to wait for leak and pressure checks to be completed before they can disembark.

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The astronauts thanked SpaceX and NASA for a successful mission, saying:

This is an incredible time to be at NASA. We thank you again and congratulate you. Happy to be aboard.

Yesterday’s launch was the first time NASA has been able to send astronauts into space from the US since the retirement of its shuttles in 2011.

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NASA administrator Jim Bridenstine said the mission had been ‘a long time coming’, adding:

It’s been nine years since we launched American astronauts, from American soil. And now it’s done.

SpaceX described the Crew Dragon capsule, also known as Demo-2, as ‘the final major test for SpaceX’s human spaceflight system to be certified by NASA for operational crew missions to and from the International Space Station’.

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On their website, the company added:

SpaceX is returning human spaceflight to the United States with one of the safest, most advanced systems ever built, and NASA’s Commercial Crew Program is a turning point for America’s future in space exploration that lays the groundwork for future missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

Confirmation of the Dragon’s attachment at the ISS came at 15:16pm BST, slightly ahead of schedule. NASA has yet to decide how long Hurley and Behnken will spend onboard the space station, though it is set to be somewhere between one and four months.

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Emily Brown

Emily Brown first began delivering important news stories aged just 13, when she launched her career with a paper round. She graduated with a BA Hons in English Language in the Media from Lancaster University, and went on to become a freelance writer and blogger. Emily contributed to The Sunday Times Travel Magazine and Student Problems before becoming a journalist at UNILAD, where she works on breaking news as well as longer form features.

Topics: News, Bob Behnken, Crew Dragon, Doug Hurley, International Space Station, NASA, SpaceX

Credits

The Independent and 3 others
  1. The Independent

    SpaceX and Nasa launch Crew Dragon spacecraft

  2. SpaceX/Twitter

    @SpaceX

  3. SpaceX

    RETURNING HUMAN SPACEFLIGHT TO THE UNITED STATES

  4. Sky News

    NASA and SpaceX craft carrying two US astronauts docks with International Space Station